On Popeye Day

Get ready to sing along because today is Popeye Day! (Words will appear during the second stanza)

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During my youth, the Mr. Cartoon Show at 4 in the afternoon on WSAZ provided my weekday cartoon fix … and Popeye the Sailor was the star of the show. Once I learned about Saturday being Popeye Day (actually celebrating his comic strip debut in 1929), I delayed the next Explore post because this is the perfect opportunity to revisit some classic characters through past posts.

Here’s the main cast of characters
Popeye
Olive Oyl
Bluto
Wimpy

Which did you visit?

On an Oyl that Isn’t Oil

Mae
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Olive Oyl is most commonly known as Popeye’s girlfriend

Appeared in nearly 25,000 comic strips, 750 cartoons, and countless comic books

Created by Elzie Crisler Segar in 1919 for Thimble Theater, and Olive was a main character for 10 years before Popeye’s 1929 appearance (yes, Popeye chased an older woman)

Before Popeye’s appearance in Thimble Theater, Harold Hamgravy was her man

Comic strip family: Cole (father), Nana (mother), Castor (brother), Diesel and Violet (nieces)

Appeared in Fleischer Studio’s first Technicolor short, Somewhere in Dreamland (1936), but without Popeye

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Most commonly voiced by character actress Mae Questel

Description: Very tall and very skinny with hair in a tight bun with a red bow, commonly wears short-sleeved solid-colored blouse and a black skirt with a line on the bottom that matches the blouse, and enormous feet, which aren’t big when she wears heels

Popeye’s comment about her measurements is, She is a perfect 57… 19-19-19.

She is, in a word – fickle

In Spain and Sweden she is known as Oliva, but as Olga in Finland

Common storyline: Bluto kidnaps her, and Popeye rescues her

In Robin-Hood Winked, her sex appeal exempted her from taxes

Quotes by Olive Oyl

  • Oh, Popeye!
  • Help! Popeye, save me!
  • Goochy goo.
  • Oh, woe is me! Oh, help! Saveth me! Saveth me!
  • Keep away from me, you, you, you wolf in ship’s clothing!
  • You, you sea monster! What have you done to my Popeye?
  • Now, now, you let me outta here, you, you stone-age baboon!
  • You wolf in cheap clothing!
  • Oh, Popeye, you are the most, the absolute highest, the farthest out, the utmost, the kookiest. And besides that, you’re hip. Crazy and cool, real cool!

… and Olive Oyl paved the way for female politicians

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… and enjoy the one from the black and white days

On Bluto

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I was raised on Popeye cartoons, so it is only fitting I also to a tribute to other characters in the series. (Popeye here) … Time for Bluto!

Bluto

Large, bearded, muscle-bound antagonist to Popeye

Classic bully as he prefers brute force over strategy

Like Popeye, a sailor and attracted to Olive Oyl

Occasionally, Bluto and Popeye start at as friends

Occasionally knocked out by Olive Oyl and by Sweet Pea

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Created by Elzie Crisler in 1932

First appeared September 12, 1932 in Thimble Theater comic strip

Early Popeye cartoons had other villians

Also called Professor Bluteau and Pierre Bluto

Bluto-Brutus is a story in itself involving copyright

Here’s the first Popeye feature, which so happens to include Olive, Bluto, and Betty Boop

On a Cartoon Buffet

Instead of dedicating a new post to a classic cartoon character, today is a pick-your-treat day! Below as the characters from past posts, so pick one – any one – or as many was who wish because this is your special Saturday Morning Buffet of cartoon characters. Enjoy! Which did you watch this morning?

Boris and Natasha

Elmer Fudd

Flintstones

Foghorn Leghorn

Jonny Quest

Mutley

Quick Draw McGraw

Peabody and Sherman

Popeye

Snagglepuss

Speedy Gonzalez

Top Cat

Underdog

Wile E Coyote

Woody Woodpecker

Yosemite Sam

* A small collection of opening theme songs

On Popeye

It’s Saturday morning, so this is a perfect time for a post about a cartoon. After all, did you watch cartoons on Saturday morning?

I watched many cartoons during my youth – not only on Saturday morning, but 4 pm Monday-through-Friday’s local cartoon show (Mr. Cartoon on WSAZ). I also recall going to the theater when a cartoon preceded the main feature.

Since it has been too long since I’ve posted about a classic cartoon character from my youth, I dedicate this post to one of my favorites, Popeye – and include a cartoon at the end of the post. For more tributes, visit Categories > Entertainment > Classic Cartoons or click here.

Popeye first appeared in the Thimble Theater comic strip on January 17, 1929.

Fleisher Studios adapted Thimble Theater characters for cartoon short films, which debuted in 1933 in a Betty Boop film.

Popeye has appeared in comic books, television, commercials, arcade and video games, and films.

Popeye’s one good eye is blue and his hair is red.

Popeye is 34 years old and was born in a typhoon off Santa Monica, California.

In the original comic strip, Popeye gained his extra strength not from eating spinach, but by rubbing the head of the rare Whiffle Hen.

Sammy Learner composed I’m Popeye the Sailor Man as the theme song in 1933.

753 Popeye cartoon segments exist.

Other characters include Bluto, Olive Oyl, Poopdeck Pappy, four nephews (Peepeye, Pupeye, Pipeye, and Poopeye), Wimpy, Swee’Pea (Popeye’s adopted child), Eugene the Jeep, Alice the Goon, Sea Hag with Bernard (her pet buzzard), Toar (caveman), and George W. Geezil.

Tributes

  • Statues of Popeye are at Universal Orlando Resort; Crystal City, Texas; Chester, Illinois; and Alma, Arkansas
  • Popeye Picnic in Chester, Illinois on the weekend after Labor Day
  • Popeye is the only comic strip character honored by a special lighting celebration at the Empire State Building (January 16-18, 2004 for Popeye’s 75th anniversary)

Useful Sites